Pink’s Not Dead


It’s not cool, it’s not mum-like, it’s not easy. Sarah Morgan explains why she’s staying in the pink


I’ve never taken heroin (no, really) but I can confidently say pink hair is as high-maintenance as a smack habit. There was a time I worried about my family, my career, Isis; now nothing is as pressing to me as pigmentation. Perfect pink has the lifespan of a mayfly, and I’m chasing the dream one tube of Marshmallow Crazy Colour at a time.


Yes, I am deliberately sporting Frenchy’s Beauty School Drop Out, Easter Egg, ‘mistake’ hair, which is fun after a lifetime trying to be Rizzo (something I have now achieved just by having the face of a woman in her mid-30s, ho ho).  It clashes with some of my old wardrobe, though it goes well with red lipstick and tattoos. But what doesn’t?


It’s not punk because, urgh, pink, right? It’s pleasantly confused, and also seems to irritate people in an astonishingly personal, Daily Mail comments way, like: ‘why is your head doing this TO ME?’ So that’s fun.


I’ve never been a pink sort of person, really, but I’ve got a daughter so now I am expected to have VERY STRONG FEELINGS about pink. Which is hard ‘cause it is literally just a colour. Of course I think it’s totally grim that there is all-pink Lego ‘for girls’, and you can’t buy a Miss Piggy t-shirt that isn’t all pink and glittery with some totally inapropes slogan on it like “Diva”, or “High Maintenance Whore”… But my daughter loves my ‘Princess Bubblegum from Adventure Time’ hair, and Princess Bubblegum is a frickin’ scientist, so, you know.


Anyway, I’ve had reasonably sensible hair for a while but then (and this had NOTHING to do with finding my first grey) I woke up in one of those brilliant ‘Fuck it, it’s only hair,’ moods. I love that feeling. When you feel fifteen-ish, buoyant, bubbly as an old thing of developing cream that’s slipped down the back of a radiator. The smell of Jerome Russell and Directions is the same umbilical hotline to my teenage self that I get listening to L7’s Bricks Are Heavy in my Skoda Fabia on the Sainsbury’s run. Pure riot grrrrl.


There you go, that’s why I like it – it’s properly uncool. It’s sort-of-cool with teenagers, which means it’s naff-as-hell if I do it. I feel like a Geography teacher going ‘hey guys, I don’t care what’s cool, and really, doesn’t that make me coolest of all?’. No. No it doesn’t, and no I won’t call you Gary.


So here’s how you do it: first you just hammer your hair with peroxide until it’s the texture of fog; holding your nerve (and wearing hats) as you go through the spectrum from brown to the dreaded ‘salmon blonde’, to white.


I don’t trust salons, for me the fun is the bubbling test tubes and ruined towels of home hair-dye. Anyway, after twenty years I think I know better than a stranger when I’m ‘just five more minutes’ away from scalp burns. And I have an obsession with YouTube peroxide tutorials –  the Coconut Oil method from Michael James is basically life changing.


Then just mix your preferred shade of pink – Directions, Crazy Colour, Manic Panic are your friends (you do not need to live near the Finsbury Park Wig Mile, a street of Afro-Caribbean hairdresser suppliers in North London, but it helps). Bleach London also do a nice colour called Rose, which you can send to your local Boots via Click n’Collect, because punk effing ROCK, right?


Wash with A Touch of Silver purple shampoo, and conditioner with a blob of dye in. Wang in some serum. For a mere 24 hours you will have perfect – not fuchsia, not yellow – angel-wing diaphanous silvery pink. It is your duty to have as much fun as possible in this time.


Anyway, I’ll enjoy it for a bit, then I might stay blonde for a spell, or – God, have you seen? – Bleach London do a colour called “Washed Up Mermaid”, which let’s face it, might as well be my Twitter bio. Fuck it, it’s only hair.

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